News Release

American, European Experts Sign Compact On Eve of President’s Trip to Europe

February 16, 2005

As President Bush prepares for his fence-mending trip to Europe, 50 foreign policy and national security experts from both sides of the Atlantic have signed a Compact Between the United States and Europe, “as a demonstration that a comprehensive strategy can be forged to deal with the full range of key challenges we face.”

In their 11-page Compact, written in the form of an agreement between governments, the signatories offer specific proposals for dealing with Iraq, Iran, peace prospects and Democracy in the Middle East, China, the International Criminal Court, climate change, the Geneva Conventions, Afghanistan, U.S.- European relations, the developing world, Sudan, and the United Nations.

The full text of the Compact is being made public at a briefing at the Brookings Institution beginning at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, February 17, previewing the president’s upcoming trip to Europe, which begins next Tuesday.

Among the Americans signing the Compact are two former National Security Advisers, Samuel R. Berger and Anthony Lake; former Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott, now president of the Brookings Institution; Robert Kagan, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; James B. Steinberg, former Deputy National Security Adviser, now vice president and director of the Foreign Policy Studies program at Brookings; former Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs James Dobbins; Joseph S. Nye Jr., Dean of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard; and Anne-Marie Slaughter, Dean of the Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University; Fareed Zakaria, editor and columnist for Newsweek International; and Philip H. Gordon, Senior Fellow and Director of the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings.

Among the Europeans signing the Compact are former British Foreign Secretary Douglas Hurd; Nicole Gnesotto, Director of the EU Institute for Security Studies, David Hannay, former British Ambassador to the United Nations and European Union (EU); Narcis Serra, former Spanish Minister of Defense; Timothy Garton Ash, professor of European Studies at Oxford University, and director of the European Studies Centre at St. Antony’s College; Joachim Bitterlich, former advisor to German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and German Ambassador to NATO; and Lawrence Freedman, professor of War Studies at King’s College, London; and Charles Grant, Director of the Centre for European Reform.

“The partnership between Europe and the United States must endure,” the Compact declares, “because our common future depends on it.”

The preamble states: “In recent weeks, optimism has grown that the partnership can find new vitality. But renewal requires more than hope; it requires action. This Compact shows that a way forward exists, if leaders on both sides of the Atlantic will take it. With bold steps, the partnership can survive and thrive, in a way that benefits Americans and Europeans alike.”

The Compact says that differences between the United States and Europe did not arise because of “atmospherics or miscommunication,” but rather “because each side has taken actions the other strongly opposes, or declined to join in actions the other favors.” Moreover, the Compact continues, these disputes have become self-perpetuating.

“American policies spark hostility among Europeans, or vice versa. That hostility, in turn, convinces leaders on both sides that they have no choice but to go it alone,” the document declares. “This vicious cycle benefits no one and must end.”

The Compact notes that both sides are proclaiming their desire for better relations as President Bush prepares to visit Europe. “But words alone will not restore a productive relationship,” the document acknowledges. “Europeans cannot simply ask Americans to recognize the error of their ways and reverse all the policies of the last four years. Americans cannot simply explain the rightness of their ways and invite Europeans to come on board. Each side will have to take steps that address the legitimate concerns of the other.”

Among the specific proposals in the Compact:

  • On Iraq: The United States shall start a strategic dialogue with its European allies on Iraq’s future through a new contact group. The European Union (EU) commits to train 5,000 senior civil servants and 25,000 Iraqi security and police forces per year. The EU will grant $1 billion in reconstruction funds and write off 50% of Iraqi debt.
  • On Iran: The United States and the EU insist that Iran permanently and verifiably end its nuclear fuel cycle program. The United States declares its support for the EU’s nuclear dialogue with Iran. The United States declares its willingness to explore with Iran resolution of other areas of concern. The EU countries should declare their readiness to impose meaningful penalties on Iran if it refuses to end its nuclear fuel recycling programs or withdraws from the Non-Proliferation Treaty?
  • On China: The EU declares that if it lifts its arms embargo against China, it will replace the embargo with a reinforced code of conduct on arms sales, including dual-use technologies with significant military applications. The EU will invite the United States, Japan, and other relevant actors to provide them with a specific list of weapons and technologies that they consider would negatively affect security and stability in the region. The United States reiterates its opposition to lifting the arms embargo, but will refrain from taking action against lifting the embargo so long as these measures are not violated?
  • On Climate Change: The United States agrees to establish binding limits on emissions of heat-trapping gasses in major industries, power generation, and transportation. The United States and European Union agree to launch a major new initiative to fund clean energy in the developing world.
  • On Afghanistan: The European members of NATO will deploy at least an additional 5,000 troops to the international assistance force in Afghanistan?
  • On the International Criminal Court: The United States reaffirms its concerns about the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC), but will not impose punitive measures on any nation that supports it. The European Union and the United States shall enter into an agreement under Article 98 of the ICC Treaty providing immunity from ICC prosecution to U.S. officials and military personnel acting in their official capacity. The United States shall not oppose a resolution by the UN Security Council referring the situation in Darfur, Sudan, to the ICC?
  • On the Geneva Conventions: The United States and EU countries will apply the Geneva Conventions to all battlefield combatants they capture in the war against terrorism, including those captured in Afghanistan who are being held at Guantanamo Bay.
  • On Middle East Democracy: The United States and the EU members affirm that encouraging the peaceful development of democratic societies that respect human rights in the broader Middle East is a central strategic aim of their foreign policies. They will establish an Independent Foundation for Democracy in the Middle East and jointly contribute $100 million a year over the next 5 years to its activities.

Read the Compact Between the United States and Europe (pdf-110kb)

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